ROCK EATING-WHAT ARE THEY MISSING?

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wellington

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My accidental dried krill spill and my leopard loving it, and the posts i got on that thread, made me think about rocks. So many tortoises chew, bite, or eat on rocks. So many, have had medical problems due to eating them. What could be missing from our torts diet, that would make them want to eat rocks? Minerals, of course comes to mind. However, which mineral and is there anything we can supplement. I have always wondered about salt. Most of the species of torts come from places that are near or on salt waters. I know how salt can spread and cover a lot of things, (I have a 100 gallon salt tank). I often wondered if a salt lick, like those for horses, but hopefully much smaller, would be a good idea? Any and all knowledge, thoughts opinions welcome.:D
 

Blakem

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When I think of tortoises eating rock, I remember learning about Indians eating dirt for the extra minerals when they are sick (please correct me if I am wrong). But, I believe we now have the necessities to hopefully help ourselves and animals.
 

wellington

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Blake m said:
When I think of tortoises eating rock, I remember learning about Indians eating dirt for the extra minerals when they are sick (please correct me if I am wrong). But, I believe we now have the necessities to hopefully help ourselves and animals.

So, you think that if a tortoise is eating rock, it is because it is missing a or some minerals, or because it is not feeling to good?
 

Blakem

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Ha, I am afraid to say because I have only been seriously dealing with my tortoises for a year. I don't want to be a know-it-all.
Since you asked, I FEEL like it may be because they are missing SOMETHING in their diet. It is interesting because I work with an autistic client (who is 12, non verbal, not potty trained, cannot write, etc.) that only eats ruffell potato chips, and fries every other day, along with soy milk, and water. He will only eat sausage sometimes along with eggs and a banana. He will then not eat it for 2-4 weeks after getting a little sick from it. Which makes me think that his body will only allow that sort of nutrients sometimes. He has a terrible immune system and gets sick very often. There is so much more to this child that I could go into detail.
 

wellington

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I have only been a tort owner for a little over a year. All opinions welcomed. Even us semi newbies and newbies can contribute. Your experience with the 12 year old is interesting, sad for him. I also think something is missing, but don't know how it can be figured out. Thanks for you imput.
 

Neal

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It could be a mineral deficiency...of what I have no idea. I think some rocks might be eaten just out of curiosity.
 

Blakem

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wellington said:
I have only been a tort owner for a little over a year. All opinions welcomed. Even us semi newbies and newbies can contribute. Your experience with the 12 year old is interesting, sad for him. I also think something is missing, but don't know how it can be figured out. Thanks for you imput.

Good to know ou have only been for a tad over a year. But not problem!
 

Redstrike

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Some do it for aiding them to grind food they've eaten. It doesn't always signal a mineral deficiency. Miner-all is a good mineral supplement.
 

wellington

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Laura said:
There is a mineral powder Yvonne uses.. see if she posts... she swears by it...

Thanks. I would love to try it. Yvonne, if you see this, please post the name and also, have you noticed that your torts don't try to eat rocks, dirt poop? I am thinking the lack of a mineral (s) may cause the habit of eating the above mentioned. Thanks:)
 

Tom

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It is MinerAll. She recommended it to me when Daisy was eating a bunch of rocks. It worked great and I still use it today for all of my tortoises.
 

lynnedit

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I think I will get some too, I think they have an 'inside' and an 'outside version.

The thing that stumps me is that of my 4 torts, only one seeks rocks out. She has managed to eat a few over time, and is very healthy. At first I thought it was her crummy previous life, but the behavior hasn't changed. She is very picky about what rock she will eat. She also nibbles on calcium.
She gets the same food as the rest; weeds/greens/optunia and has a very good appetite, spends her time outside 24/7.
She is active and alert.

Why only her?
 

wellington

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Thanks Tom. Will be looking for it. I don't really have small rocks in the enclosure, that I know of. However, because,he does like to bite at the larger ones, I figured he must be missing something.

lynnedit said:
I think I will get some too, I think they have an 'inside' and an 'outside version.

The thing that stumps me is that of my 4 torts, only one seeks rocks out. She has managed to eat a few over time, and is very healthy. At first I thought it was her crummy previous life, but the behavior hasn't changed. She is very picky about what rock she will eat. She also nibbles on calcium.
She gets the same food as the rest; weeds/greens/optunia and has a very good appetite, spends her time outside 24/7.
She is active and alert.

Why only her?

Possibly her body doesn't process foods as the others or because of her previous care, needs it more. Just a guess here. Not sure if we will ever know why any of them do it, as for what it is they are lacking I just figured it must mean something if they do it.

Looking it up on the net finds nothing. Any idea where to buy it?
 

jpmcclure

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wellington said:
Thanks Tom. Will be looking for it. I don't really have small rocks in the enclosure, that I know of. However, because,he does like to bite at the larger ones, I figured he must be missing something.


Possibly her body doesn't process foods as the others or because of her previous care, needs it more. Just a guess here. Not sure if we will ever know why any of them do it, as for what it is they are lacking I just figured it must mean something if they do it.

Looking it up on the net finds nothing. Any idea where to buy it?




If you google it like miner-all it pops up several places to order it from. Use the hyphen.
 

dmmj

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I can honestly say in all of my years (decades actually) I have never seen one of my tortoises eat rocks. I always thought they were like birds and ate them for digestion.
 

bigred

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I had a sulcata that would eat rocks and my newest radiated looks for rocks all the time. I just try to keep them from eating them and keep rocks out of the enclosures.
 

Redstrike

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lynnedit said:
I think I will get some too, I think they have an 'inside' and an 'outside version.

The thing that stumps me is that of my 4 torts, only one seeks rocks out. She has managed to eat a few over time, and is very healthy. At first I thought it was her crummy previous life, but the behavior hasn't changed. She is very picky about what rock she will eat. She also nibbles on calcium.
She gets the same food as the rest; weeds/greens/optunia and has a very good appetite, spends her time outside 24/7.
She is active and alert.

Why only her?

I have recently seen the same thing in my group. Only one is obssessed with eating rocks/dirt. This is day 2 of Miner-All supplementation, hopefully it curbs this habit.
 

ChiKat

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I have never heard of Miner-all but it's something I will definitely look into! Nelson is always trying to eat little rocks. I swear he's worse than a toddler! (I guess he *is* 3 years old so technically a toddler ;))
 
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